Ukpono Ukpong, Abuja
Lagos State has been named as the leader on the list of states with high rate of drug abuse.
The Commander, National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) in Kano State made the disclosure on Friday when the Presidential Advisory Committee for the Elimination of Drug Abuse (PACEDA) paid a courtesy visit to the Chairman of Fagge Local Government Area, Alhaji Shehi Abdullahi.
He revealed that Lagos State has now taken over as the number one followed by Ogun, then Kano State.
While noting that the rate of drug abuse has been reduced in Kano from three per cent to one per cent according to a recent report, he noted that the success was recorded in the last few months after his resumption as the new Commander of the agency in the state.
“Since I resumed office, we inaugurated a special operation team tagged ‘Operation Sharar Miyagu’ aimed at checking drug abuse in Kano State.
“With this effort, we have realised that the drug peddlers are the suppliers of fake drugs, which we are also doing everything possible to tackle it.
“We have arrested so many fake drug dealers in Sabon Gari area of the metropolis,’’ Abdul said.
Abdul explained that the cases of drug abuse and the supply of such drugs have reduced following the commitment of President Muhammadu Buhari in the fight against the menace in Kano and other parts of the country.
In his remark, the Committee Chairman, retired Brig-Gen Buba Marwa said the fight against drug abuse is a great challenge to President Buhari, adding that this gave him the courage to set up the committee.
According to him, the responsibilities of the advisory committee is to find the major causes of drug abuse from the grassroots and also suggest for solutions to the problems.
Marwa expressed confidence that the President would take serious actions on the report and its suggestions, adding that the committee will tell the President the suggestions of the public.
“One of our targets is to ensure the drastic reduction of the drugs supply into the country, which I believe this will contribute to the end of its abuse.
“We are ready to suggest for a serious punishment to the drug dealers and suppliers if found guilty, therefore, we need the support of the Religious, Community, and Traditional Leaders,’’ he stated.
Marwa added that the provision of more rehabilitation centres where the drug users would be rehabilitated and trained on skill acquisition programme will help in reducing the illicit drugs use.
He said one of the major challenges in fight against drug abuse is the issue of arrest by the NDLEA and release by the court.
He called for the amendment of law that established the agency to enable them arrest and prosecute the criminals without any hitches in judicial processes.